My educational journey began as a dentist, with a BDS from RGUHS in India, followed by an MSc in Oral Sciences from the University of Glasgow. For my master’s project, I worked in the Ramage lab at Glasgow, which turned into a year as a research assistant working alongside research fellows and postgraduate students on industrial projects in collaboration with GSK pharmaceuticals. I learned important skills in project management as well as teaching which allowed me to explore a wide range of dentistry-related research. I was also involved in several publications, which pushed me to pursue a career in oral microbiology which led to my current project. With my PhD, I hope to utilize my previous skills and improve upon them and explore new fields such as metaproteomics to gain new insights into anti-microbial resistance. By combining my knowledge of clinical dentistry with scientific research, I look forward to working towards translational clinical dentistry.
The objective of my project is to understand the functional response of the oral microbiome to additives, characterized by sub-lethal concentrations of CHX, and to examine the potential of novel actives. Using chlorhexidine and other novel compounds in varying concentrations, we also aim to understand the role of the human oral microbiome in promoting anti-microbial resistance. The methodology will be carried out in 3 stages, to begin with mining of the human oral microbiome database (HOMD) for metaproteomic analysis. We will then grow in vitro biofilms from healthy human saliva, to create an oral microbiome model and use modified Nanopore pipelines to establish the microbial composition of these models. Quantitative metaproteomics with ultra-performance liquid chromatography mass spectrometry (LC-MS) will then be carried out to identify the metaproteomic profile and enzyme activities, including anti-microbial resistance (AMR) profiling. Once these protocols are established, we will monitor functional changes in response to CHX and a novel compound studied during placement at Haleon. Improving our understanding of how the oral microbiome reacts to routine antimicrobial use is key to future development of pre- and pro-biotics and in understanding potential risks to AMR.